Just what is it that makes food eaten outdoors taste so much better? Maybe it’s because when we dine al fresco our meal is taking place in a beautiful outdoor setting or we’re highlighting a special occasion such as a family, company, or church get-together. And if you throw in the use of a barbeque grill, your picnic turns into a cookout. Either way, it’s just another fabulous way to soak up the sun and enjoy one of the highlights of the summer season.
Here in the lush surroundings of the Great Smoky Mountains, you have your pick of ideal picnic settings, and on our Family Adventure Island, we’ve made it easy for you to enjoy one with us!
Either before or after your whitewater rafting adventure, you have free access to our picnic facilities complete with brand-new tables and barbeque grills. We offer outdoor games, swing sets, and a swimming beach for the kids. You’ll also find a nature/birding trail and a new Geocache location on the island. Family Adventure Island is also home to our dual Ziplines and High Elements Ropes Challenge Course. Whether you’re relaxing or in the action, Family Adventure Island is the perfect place to spend a summer day!
Another great nearby location is the Big Creek section of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Big Creek offers you a trip to one of the more primitive and quieter sections of the Smokies. There is a small established campground and picnic area on the site of an old logging camp. To reach Big Creek, take I-40 Waterville Exit (451) and cross the bridge over the Pigeon River. At the end of the bridge, turn left and proceed one mile to the Carolina Power and Water Plant. The power plant sits at the confluence of Big Creek and the Pigeon River. (It’s an interesting to note that the driving force for the turbines is neither of these streams. From a dam on Cataloochee Creek six miles across the mountain, water is channeled through a 14-ft. diameter tunnel cut through the solid rock of the Smokies. The water boils out below the power plant and into the Pigeon River.) Continue following the road past the power plant another 1.3 miles to the Park boundary and an intersection with the old NC 284 road. The road into Big Creek continues straight through the intersection. The Campground and picnic area is located about 1 mile beyond the ranger station.